A "cooling-off rule" typically refers to a law or regulation that covers certain types of purchases and gives a purchaser a three-day cooling-off period after making a purchase. Texas enacted its own rule, which it calls a "three-day right to cancel." Texas' statute closely mirrors the federal cooling-off statute. It's important to note, however, that the rule only applies in very specific circumstances.
Pursuant to Texas law, buyers are allowed a three-day right to cancel a purchase under certain circumstances. Purchases of services or goods in excess of $25 are covered by the law. In Texas, a salesperson or solicitor is required to inform a buyer — either in writing or verbally — that the buyer has a three-day right to cancel the purchase. If a salesperson does not provide a cancellation form, the buyer receives extra time to cancel the purchase.
Texas' right to cancel law only applies to purchases over $25 that did not occur at the seller's "principal place of business." As such, purchases made at the buyer's home — typically involving door-to-door sales — or on premises rented by the seller, can be cancelled. However, if a car is purchased at a dealership, assuming the dealership is the seller's principal, or primary, place of business, the right to cancel law does not apply and the purchase cannot be cancelled.
Right to Cancel vs. Lemon Law
A right to cancel law and a lemon law are different in Texas, as elsewhere. The right to cancel applies to all purchases of services or goods in excess of $25, provided the purchase did not take place at the seller's primary place of business. Lemon laws apply specifically to automobiles. Texas' lemon laws apply to new leased or purchased automobiles sold from a licensed dealer. In some cases, lemon laws apply to used cars, particularly if they are still covered by the manufacturer's warranty.
Typically, cars are not sold door-to-door. As such, the three-day right to cancel does not usually apply to automobile purchases in Texas. However, if you purchased an automobile from a temporary lot, and the lot is not considered the dealer's principal place of business, the three-day right to cancel might apply. If you have specific questions, you should contact the Texas Attorney General's consumer hotline at: 1-800-621-0508.
Andrine Redsteer's writing on tribal gaming has been published in "The Guardian" and she continues to write about reservation economic development. Redsteer holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Washington, a Master of Arts in Native American studies from Montana State University and a Juris Doctor from Seattle University School of Law.